Kingdom Ethics 2

Andrew Coombridge | Mar 20, 2022

Scripture: Matthew 5:21-48

Murder Begins in the Heart

21 “You have heard that it was said to our ancestors, Do not murder,[a](A) and whoever murders will be subject to judgment.(B) 22 But I tell you, everyone who is angry with his brother or sister[b] will be subject to judgment. Whoever insults[c] his brother or sister will be subject to the court.[d] Whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be subject to hellfire.[e](C) 23 So if you are offering your gift on the altar, and there you remember that your brother or sister has something against you, 24 leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled with your brother or sister, and then come and offer your gift. 25 Reach a settlement quickly with your adversary while you’re on the way with him to the court, or your adversary will hand you over to the judge, and the judge to[f] the officer, and you will be thrown into prison.(D) 26 Truly I tell you, you will never get out of there until you have paid the last penny.[g]

Adultery Begins in the Heart

27 “You have heard that it was said, Do not commit adultery.[h](E) 28 But I tell you, everyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.(F) 29 If your right eye causes you to sin,(G) gouge it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of the parts of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.(H) 30 And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of the parts of your body than for your whole body to go into hell.

Divorce Practices Censured

31 “It was also said, Whoever divorces(I) his wife must give her a written notice of divorce.[i](J) 32 But I tell you, everyone who divorces his wife, except in a case of sexual immorality, causes her to commit adultery. And whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.(K)

Tell the Truth

33 “Again, you have heard that it was said to our ancestors,You must not break your oath, but you must keep your oaths to the Lord.[j](L) 34 But I tell you, don’t take an oath at all: either by heaven, because it is God’s throne; 35 or by the earth, because it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, because it is the city of the great King.(M) 36 Do not swear by your head, because you cannot make a single hair white or black. 37 But let your ‘yes’ mean ‘yes,’ and your ‘no’ mean ‘no.’ Anything more than this is from the evil one.(N)

Go the Second Mile

38 “You have heard that it was said, An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.[k](O) 39 But I tell you, don’t resist[l] an evildoer. On the contrary, if anyone slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.(P) 40 As for the one who wants to sue you and take away your shirt, let him have your coat as well. 41 And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two. 42 Give to the one who asks you, and don’t turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.(Q)

Love Your Enemies

43 “You have heard that it was said, Love your neighbor[m](R) and hate your enemy. 44 But I tell you, love your enemies[n] and pray for those who[o] persecute you,(S) 45 so that you may be[p] children of your Father in heaven. For he causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.(T) 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward will you have? Don’t even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what are you doing out of the ordinary?[q](U) Don’t even the Gentiles[r] do the same? 48 Be perfect,(V) therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

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  1. 5:21 Ex 20:13; Dt 5:17
  2. 5:22 Other mss add without a cause
  3. 5:22 Lit Whoever says ‘Raca’; an Aramaic term of abuse that puts someone down, insulting one’s intelligence
  4. 5:22 Lit Sanhedrin
  5. 5:22 Lit the gehenna of fire
  6. 5:25 Other mss read judge will hand you over to
  7. 5:26 Lit quadrans, the smallest and least valuable Roman coin, worth 1/64 of a daily wage
  8. 5:27 Ex 20:14; Dt 5:18
  9. 5:31 Dt 24:1
  10. 5:33 Lv 19:12; Nm 30:2; Dt 23:21
  11. 5:38 Ex 21:24; Lv 24:20; Dt 19:21
  12. 5:39 Or don’t set yourself against, or don’t retaliate against
  13. 5:43 Lv 19:18
  14. 5:44 Other mss add bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you,
  15. 5:44 Other mss add mistreat you and
  16. 5:45 Or may become, or may show yourselves to be
  17. 5:47 Or doing that is superior; lit doing more
  18. 5:47 Other mss read tax collectors

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